An ‘elevator speech’ is a quick and concise summary of what your organization does and what makes it special. While we rarely find opportunities to make speeches on elevators, the elevator speech comes in handy in all kinds of situations. Here are some tips to make yours successful.

Know your goal. How can the person you are speaking with get involved? What do you want to happen as a result of the conversation?

Know your audience. Make sure you think of them on a human level as well as a business level. What makes your elevator speech interesting to them? Why should they want to listen? How can you help them achieve their goals?

Know the basics. What are the key messages that define your organization? Use them consistently.

Keep it fresh. Think of recent examples or stories to illustrate your key messages. Use examples that your listener can relate to.

Keep it rea.l Tell stories with concrete details. Paint a picture with words for your listener.

Push the button.s Let your passion for your work show through. Get excited. Make eye contact. Say no to jargon Remember that your listener is a person first and a business associate second. Use everyday language that everyone understands.

Be prepared. Memorize your key messages. Jot down effective language and success stories you hear from colleagues. You never know when they will come in handy.